Monday, July 30, 2012

The Cars - Heartbeat City

The Cars - a very significant band to me, but oddly over time I have occelated a bit on them.  The ups are - they are the first real rock and roll concert I saw.  At the Aragon Brawlroom in Chicago, on their first national tour, behind their smash debut album.  Opening was Nick "Hot Child in the City" Gilder. But what makes this band so great - that they play very contained and strategically - is mostly what I don't like so much about them.  I like a looser, more free-wheeling band.  But, this is still a great album cover.  I owned a used Plymouth Duster too - in green - but it did not have that hood in matt black finish.   And it also was not a 340 cubic inch engine.   This is Heartbeat City, the Cars' fifth studio album, released in 1984.   It contains a total of five AT 40 singles, two of which ("Drive" and "You Might Think") were Top 10 as well, - at #3 and #7, respectively.  A number of songs from the album gained significant radio and TV exposure, notably "You Might Think," of which the video was in heavy rotation on MTV in 1984 and 1985.   The lead vocal on "Drive" is by bassist Benjamin Orr.   The Cars performed at the first Live Aid concert and they played three songs from the album ("You Might Think" and "Drive," plus the album's title track) and "Just What I Needed" from their debut record.  This album was produced by one of the greatest rock record makers of all time: Robert John "Mutt" Lange.  His commitment to this Cars album meant Mutt would not be able to work on the forthcoming Def Leppard album, Hysteria.  However, due to lengthy delays leading up to the making of Hysteria, Mutt was brought in one time to eventually able to produce that album.

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